February 1840. Mazagran, Algeria
French troops, hell bent on subjugating Algeria after a disagreement with Deylik ruler Hussein Dey, found themselves under siege in the fort at Mazagran. Troops under the command of All al-Qadir held the French inside the fort for several days before they made a significant error. Thinking that the French were out of ammo, and not seeing any benefit of the siege, al-Qadir withdrew, leaving the French garrison free to resupply.
Among the victuals ordered by the quartermaster, there was probably a significant order of coffee beans. You see, while inside the fort, and running out of milk, the French combated the blazing heat by mixing their coffee with ice or iced water. This is thought to be the first record of iced coffee. The drink was propagated around Africa and Europe where it was frequently mixed with lemon and called the ‘Mazagran.’ The Austrians added rum, and the Portuguese additionally added mint.
In the 1990s, Starbucks decided to try to develop the Mazagran for its thousands of outlets. It did not catch on; but, in the process, Starbucks geeks learned a lot about how to make a coffee extract that was later used to make their famous frappuccinos. The frappuccino was a far more palatable thing than simple, freezing-cold coffee, and it eventually paved the way for the iced latte.
The recipe given here is from the Starbucks ‘Coffee at home‘ recipe site.
Starbucks® Iced Latte
- Fresh double espresso (8oz; does not need to be cooled)
- Three quarters of a jam jar of milk
- Sugar syrup to taste (can be plain or vanilla)
Prepare a tall glass full of ice.
Shake the shit out of the milk and syrup in the SEALED jam jar until frothy.
Pour the coffee over the ice, and then the milk, spooning the froth over the top.